cappella bacci frescoes


The Chapel Maggiore of the Basilica of San Francesco, frescoed by Piero Della Francesca over the course of the XV century, was reopened to the public after its restoration in April of 2000.

The project needed, on the one hand, to resolve the delicate problem of an insertion of a body of light into the frescoed interior space, and on the other hand, to succeed in guaranteeing optimal lighting conditions whether from the point of view of uniformity in lighting or from that of conservation.

The project finally foresaw the advent of a removable element placed on the ground at the centre of the frescoed space. This idea was examined from a technical lighting standpoint by selecting the light sources most suitable to the correct perception of colours and verifying the geometries of the light at each frescoed area whether through experiments on site or through simulations with scale models.

The central lighting element, from which departed 48 different beams of light, was a synthesis of lighting outlets, orientation and cooling technology, and the expected formal aesthetics for its insertion into the interior of the Chapel.

This element consisted of four slenderly shaped legs on which rested a thin oval platform at around two meters high.  The platform housed all the universal joints for the various orientations of the light sources.  Within the inside of the legs passed all of the electrical connections into the base where all the lighting outlets and controls were located.



Enel Spa 

design team

G. Traverso, P. Vighy
G. Muñoz, M. Bizzaro, S. Valenti
TiFS Ingegneria Padova (artistic supervision)

photo credits